The sheer monstrosity of Shanghai!

Contest winner Cindy Keith is sharing China through eyes while on a once-in-a-lifetime all-inclusive trip

Vernon’s Cindy Keith won a once-in-a-lifetime all-inclusive trip to China through Black Press Media and the Abbotsford Chamber ofCommerce and now – she’s sharing her experience with you.

Blog #2: The sheer monstrosity of Shanghai!

By: Cindy Keith

We boarded for our flight to Shanghai then traveled by bus one-and-a-half hours away; 100-km northwest to Suzhou. This city’s pretty canals, stone bridges, pagodas and meticulously-designed gardens have contributed to its status as one of the top tourist attractions in China.

Its Classical Gardens were added to the UNESCO World Heritage sites! My most favourite and the one we investigated most extensively, was the centuries old Lingering Garden; a close second, the West (Monastery) Garden.

We had a traditional noodle soup for dinner – a big hit.

The next day we were busy touring the Suzhou silk factory – throughout China’s Imperial past, Suzhou silk has been associated with high-quality silk products, supplying silk to ancient royal families.

By the 13th century, it was already the centre of the profitable silk trade. We learned even the likes of Vera Wang, Georgio Armani and many more designers have been, and continue to be, benefactors.

Even the former Lady Diana Princess of Wales ordered silk for her wedding gown from Suzhou!

Our local guide Lili told us Suzhou is known as the “Venice of the East” or “The Venice of China”.

Throughout our tour, we have been so lucky to have experienced such knowledgeable guides and the regular kindness of the local Chinese people we have crossed paths with. Next, we returned to the “showpiece” of the booming economy of mainland China…

Shanghai is the most populous city proper in the world, with a population over 27 million! It’s a global financial centre and transport hub, with the world’s busiest container port. It sits on the south edge of the great Yangtze River and is bounded to the east by the South China Sea.

I’ve heard of other nicknames such as “Pearl of the Orient” and “Paris of the East”.

We did a tour of the Bund, the famous waterfront park that lines the shores of the city line. Of interest, China used to be called the “Kingdom of Bicycles” in the 1980s/90s because they were the popular mode of transport for Chinese people at the time.

Thanks to the fast development of infrastructure over the years, cars, buses, mopeds and the metro reign superior today. However, a new bicycle wave is rising in China again thanks to the increasing popularity of mobile phone app-based bike-sharing services. The bike wave is not only creating an environment-friendly way of commuting in cities, but the China Daily highlights that the combined role of technology, innovation and market forces is better allocating resources and reducing pollution.

Here here!

Our last full day in Shanghai was spent initially visiting the Pudong economic development zone, seeing the fast speed of China’s developing economy. Next we visited a silk embroidery centre with beautifully handcrafted artwork and carpets with artists actually on site demonstrating how intricate their products truly are! We then arrived at the Old Shanghai Market (great shopping and be ready to haggle all the way!) for the afternoon.

Once again I was reminded of the regular tendency for random requests that the Chinese of all ages would excitedly make, for we foreigners to be in their photos! They appear to welcome our affiliation and being altogether – which sure feels like a welcome and a honour 🙂

I decided to wander through the Yu Garden – a maze of marvellous pavilions, ponds, rock works and overarching trees. As I looked across the bustling bazaar just outside of it, I couldn’t help but reflect on how dynamic a place this truly is 🙂

My third and final blog is now done.

I’m just so appreciative of all the wonderful things I’ve been able to do – once again back in this vast Republic – thank you for sharing it with me! I’m super thrilled to have been selected to blog to newsreaders in British Columbia from afar and would definitely like to say “cheers” to my fellow travellers, the Black Press and the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce for making it happen!

As I return home to beautiful British Columbia, Canada, I sign off with my most sincere appreciation,

~ 🙂 Cindy

Check out her first and second blog here. From Vernon to the Great Wall and Sensational Xi’an!

Posted by Vernon Morning Star on Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Just Posted

Stay free of theft and scams this holiday season

Saanich Police offer suggestions for a happy holiday

Lost Victoria: Story of the Crystal Palace

Historian Stuart Stark launches book about iconic Oak Bay structure that was lost to flames

Plastic checkout bag ban to take effect in Victoria next summer

Merchants may still provide free bags for certain grocery and retail items

Police wait on autopsy findings on human foot

Sooke RCMP are waiting for autopsy findings before determing if a human… Continue reading

Victoria rental prices declining, according to national listing website

The median price of a one-bedroom suite dropped almost five per cent in December

Kind Kids Club hands crafts cards for Oak Bay Lodge residents

Additional funds raised go toward gifts for the pediatric wing at Victoria General Hospital

Court denies WestJet’s bid to toss out discrimination lawsuit of former worker

Mandalena Lewis is suing WestJet over allegations of gender-based discrimination

Sagmoen neighbours recall alleged hammer attack

Woman was screaming outside Maple Ridge townhouse in 2013

Accused B.C. drug smuggler to be extradited

Supreme Court of Canada upholds extradition order for accused Shuswap drug smuggler, Colin Martin

Toddler sent to hospital following dog bite at Vancouver Island daycare

Malamute/husky cross involved in incident at 1200-block of Burnside Rd. West

One convicted, two cleared in 2014 deaths of men in B.C.’s Cariboo

Andrew Jongbloets convicted of manslaughter in deaths of Matthew Hennigar, 23 and Kalvin Andy, 22

Island entering the peak of flu season

Island Health says flu shots the best prevention against the virus

Firefighter dies, thousands more take on California blaze

This is second death linked to the Thomas fire, northwest of Los Angeles

Saanich lets pot business roll along

Council Tuesday issued a temporary use permit for the production of medical… Continue reading

Most Read